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Published On: June 29th, 2006

(6/24/06) The Mankato MoonDogs left the thunder in their bats in Thunder Bay. After exploding for 10 runs in a win over the Border Cats last week, the MoonDogs’ bats fell silent in a 1-0 loss Saturday night.

The MoonDogs had a golden opportunity to at least tie the game, or possibly win it, in the bottom of the ninth. Mankato loaded the bases with nobody out, but Thunder Bay’s Josh Ruhlman got Shane Buschini and Sean Halton to strike out, and Michael Parker lined back to Ruhlman to end the game.

Nate Hanson had reached on an error to lead off the inning, and Robert Rodebaugh followed with a walk. Tim Smith laid down a perfect bunt up the third base line to load the bases, only for the heart of the order to come up short.

The Border Cats strung together three consecutive singles to score the game’s only run in the seventh, with Oney Guillen, son of Chicago White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, starting the rally. With runners at the corners, Marcus Jones singled past Rodebaugh at first, providing Thunder Bay with the margin of victory.

Craig Heyer went seven innings to earn his first win for the Border Cats, allowing only two hits and striking out three. Matt Mossey took the loss for the MoonDogs, giving up five hits in four innings of relief for starter Fabian Gomez, who rebounded from a tough first start to throw five shutout innings.

Gomez fell victim to a high pitch count, after working his way around three hits surrendered in the first inning. Jones singled with one out, but was caught attempting to steal second. Ben Petsch and Joey Lieberman followed with consecutive singles, but Gomez got Dale Mollenhauer to line out to end the threat.